Global manufacturing executives rank the UK as one of the top destinations for future sales growth, ahead of established manufacturing economies such as Germany, according to the Global Manufacturing Outlook published today.
The UK has risen to second place – ranked equally with China – as a country where global companies expect to derive the majority of their sales growth over the next two years. Only the US (45 percent) beats the UK (17 percent), which is ranked in joint second place with China (17 percent).
Global Manufacturing Outlook, which surveyed 460 executives globally, also reveals that in terms of a country where global companies expect profit growth in the next two years, the UK is ranked third (16 percent), only marginally behind China (18 percent), and marginally ahead of Germany (15 percent).
“This is encouraging news for manufacturers in the UK and reflects the increasing confidence in the sector we have seen in recent months. The UK economy overall is showing positive economic signs, while comparatively, some of our overseas competitors are on more shaky ground,” commented Stephen Cooper, KPMG’s UK Head of Industrial Manufacturing.
“It is also interesting that the global companies expect a higher profit growth in the UK than Germany. Germany traditionally has a reputation of being efficient in manufacturing processes, so one would expect them to rate perhaps higher than the UK as a naturally more profitable country for investors. The wider Euro crisis and European debt issues may still have a lag impact on Germany.”
The survey also suggests that 85 percent of UK manufacturers are moving to 3D printing to reduce their product development life cycle, however, in terms of innovation and new product development, UK companies are falling behind their global peers in R&D spending, despite recent UK tax incentives.
The report also found that the number one issue for UK companies in managing their supply chain was inadequate IT systems for supply chain visibility, planning and execution.
“While UK manufacturers are still facing a number of challenges, it is encouraging that global businesses are increasing their focus on the UK for growth in sales and profit. This is great news, which should further speed up the already promising UK economic turnaround. The UK has signalled that it is ‘Open for Business’, and the global market place is responding,” Cooper continued.